Photographs are an
unusually important part in this film. Don Chabo’s story suggested the design of cameras to reflect both classical Mayan notions of cyclical time and the cyclical patterns of daily life within his household. I then went to noted camera designer John Cook. The resulting special-design cameras met specifications that included low-cost, toughness, resistance to heat, insects and moisture, and low power draws. The cameras include: a 360º rotating motorized slit-scan camera to take a 100-foot long continuous horizontal image with no frame lines on 35mm movie film; a projector without gate to project this film; a combination 180º tilting/360º rotating motorized tripod; and automatic cameras on variable timers with flat field lenses for overhead placement in Don Chabo’s house. The apparatus at the right is a 180º tilting/360º rotating motorized tripod holding a 360º rotating motorized slit-scan camera.
Drawings are integral
to this ten-year collaboration between shaman, anthropologist, and filmmaker. Don Chabo grew to be especially comfortable with this medium and made drawings of his religious experiences. ThIs drawing depicts the relationship between God and World. It was drawn with markers on one hot afternoon in 1993.